G'd Morning Gentlemen and Gentle ladies:Billf suggested I check in with this forum to learn about websites and specifically Godaddy. (Bill has been a great help with some other problems I've been having.)Now for a disclaimer: I'm a rank beginner in this stuff. I can turn the computer on and follow directions, and use my computer for its word processing capabilities. By profession I'm a writer with a biological background and have used and progressed from the mechanical calculator, slip-stick, programmable calculator, Kay Pro, and now the Internet connected computer using ME. I can navigate reasonably well in WP and Word (still learning Word). The computer and the word processing capabilities have revolutionized my writing. I no longer have to hire a secretary to clean type my material, and I can edit without having to retype again and again. I'd more likely give up sex before I'd give up my computer.I've used the Internet and e-mail to transport written material and photographs to most of my editors and markets. In some cases this is a rather recent change in others it has been going on for 10 years. Now for my questions: Many of my acquaintances have set up websites where they can market books and other materials directly to customers. One of my Internet providers, Mediacom, will allow websites to be set up on their system (free), but the wringer in this is they don't allow for commercial transactions. Q: 1: Where can I find a simple English explanation of Domains, Websites, domain names, providers, resellers of domains, ISP (I'd guess that this means Internet Service Providers like Mediacom), and ultimately Godaddy.com? How are all of these related, or not? Q: 2: I've looked at Godaddy's site. They seem reasonable, $10 per month. Are there better places to purchase a name and commercial website? Q: 2: From all of your experience and wisdom, does it make sense for me to establish and build a commercial website? How much maintenance would be required? How difficult would it be for me to build one, or will I have to hire someone to do this? I'm sure that I'll have more questions, but this will do for a start.TIANow back under my rock.Spence, who just had his bad knee injected.
Hey Spence,Welcome! You'll get more info here than you'll know what to do with...LOL. These people are awesome!Where can I find a simple English explanation of Domains, Websites, domain names, providers, resellers of domains, ISP (I'd guess that this means Internet Service Providers like Mediacom), and ultimately Godaddy.com?Try this for a Beginners Look at Web Building and various definitions;http://www.w3schools.com/site/default.aspGoDaddy is a reseller of Domain Names and provider of Web Hosting. I only use them for purchasing domain names and a different company for web hosting. www.Modevia.com Quite a few others here use www.ICDSoft.comI've looked at Godaddy's site. They seem reasonable, $10 per month. Are there better places to purchase a name and commercial website?First, there are different prices for different domain name TLDs. .COM, .US, .NET, .ORG, are all different TLDs and are used differently as well.http://www.w3.org/DesignIssues/TLD (Discussion of new TLDs)Second, I use GoDaddy exclusively for purchasing domain names and nothing else. The general consensus seems to be that you should keep the domain names and web hosting separate in case you ever have any problems with the web hosting company.Third, domain name purchases are in one year (more if you want) increments, web hosting is generally monthly, although you can find yearly services as well.From all of your experience and wisdom, does it make sense for me to establish and build a commercial website?If you have something to sell? Sure. However, will you make enough to recoup the costs for the web site or will this just be a way to "get your name out there" more frequently?How much maintenance would be required?That will depend on why you create a web site and what you want from it. If you plan on adding stories regularly, it will require regular maintenance. If you just want a place to sell some books/stories but they'll be mostly static, it won't require as much maintenance.How difficult would it be for me to build one, or will I have to hire someone to do this?Well, again it depends on what you want/expect. It will also depend on how much time you devote to learning the proper procedures for building a web site.If it's gonna be static without much change, you could hire someone to create the web site for you and then spend the time learning how to manage it yourself. But, remember that if you don't learn, or decide to give up, you'll have to hire them back or someone else to manage it for you and now you're back to will you recoup your costs?I say start with figuring out what you want a web site for and what you expect to get out of it. You know how to layout a story, do the same for your web site...draw a diagram as to how you "see it" so you'll know what you want and how you expect it to work. That will make it easier to get your ideas/expectations across to a webmaster should you hire someone and/or make it easier for you to construct it should you decide to create it yourself.HTHßillƒ
Hi Spence,Domains and Domain Names are the same thing, one is just a shorter name for the other. A domain is just an address on the internet. Similar to a house address. It has a specific location. The big difference between a house address and the domain address is that you can pick up and move the domain a lot easier than moving a house. :)Websites are the "building" at the domain address. Fool.com is a website. To get a website for your domain you need a web hosting provider. There are lots of them out there.Creating a website such as: www.spence.com requires two steps:1. Buy the domain from a domain registrar. GoDaddy, DomainInvestigator, and others are domain registrars They allow you to purchase a domain. They give you your address.2. Buy some web hosting. aka build your house. Many domain registrars also offer hosting. The main point here is that the person you use in step 1 and the person you use in step 2 do not have to be the same. Many people say they shouldn't be the same. That's up to you however.To answer your second question, I personally use Domain Investigator to register my domain and www.lowcostwebhosting.ca to host it. I can't comment on GoDaddy.Does it make sense to have a website? I think they're a great tool. They allow people to find you, they provide a focal point for you and your books, I definately think they're useful. Check out okalrel.org for one of my town's local writers.If you want a quality looking site you're going to have to pay for it. I say this only because you don't have enough background right now to be building the site. Personally what I did was to pay for a series of templates which I later filled in with text. I make things work, I don't try to make them look nice. :) I know my limitations.Writing simple HTML (the language used for websites) is not hard. There are many programs and books out there which explain it all in detail. Making something look nice is the hard part.Maintaining the site is something you could do with a little practice. Add new content, publish some articles online whatever. Place reviews for your book online. There are lots of ways you can maintain and update your site. Try to avoid a stale site that is built once and never changed.Does that help?Roland
Roland:First many thanks...that was clearer than any explanation I've seen of this process.As a writer, I keep thinking about setting up and using a web site, but being cheap my nature, I have to ask myself how much above the break even point would a website bring in to my budget.I'm in the process of getting ready for a major writer meeting in Spokane, leave Sunday, where a large portion of the conference is directed toward workshops in self-publishing and digital photography. Every writer has a book in them, and I'm no different, but as I explained above, I'm also cheap. Simply setting up a website for ego purposes doesn't do anything for me. Add to this, I have two sons in different aspects of the computer world. One is a data base administrator for a company that assembles and regurgitates farm statistics each year. The other, has just started working for Godaddy.com. Between the two of them, and what I've learned here, I suspect that I have the expertise to set up a web site and maintain it, but the largest issue is the one I just related...can it be profitable.Anyway, I thank you and Billf for all of your help and information. I must say that I've learned a bunch in the last couple of weeks between problems with my old computer and now learning to operate my new computer from this Fool group and Help with This computer fool group.Now back under my rock.Spence, who has two weeks of work and only three days to do it in.
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